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Identity and Territory in Conflict 
Daniel Tower (University of Sydney)
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Advocacy and Activism
Tuesday 15 September, 13:00-14:30

Short Abstract:

The relationship between identity and territory is of particular significance during times of armed conflict. This panel focuses on interdisciplinary work between geography and anthropology to better frame research on conflict and aid distribution.

Long Abstract

The relationship between identity and territory is of particular significance during times of armed conflict and in the brokering of peace and stability in its aftermath. Conceptions of a homeland and of sacred territory overlap with group identity based in ethnicity, religion, and culture. To this extent, geographical and anthropological research methods on armed conflict and subsequent post-conflict periods should be increasingly be considered in tandem. With advances in technology and the increased push for inter-disciplinary research this conference provides a platform for geographical methods to be incorporated into anthropological theory and vice versa.

This panel invites participants to approach aid and conflict from the standpoint that location is significant and connected to human social environments. Territory and identity reify national and ideological based systems that fuel conflict. Similarly, the role of aid organisations in conflict zones frequently need to circumnavigate these identities and connections to territory in order to function effectively. The role of this panel is starting a conversation on how interdisciplinary work between geography and anthropology can better frame research in armed conflict and associated aid networks that is often dependent on both perspectives.

Possible paper topics could include:

• Role of internal and external boundaries in national conflict

• Case studies of minority and indigenous attachment to territory in conflict

• The role of geography and anthropology in disputed territories

• Use of GIS in anthropology field work methods

• Visual anthropology methods in re-framing geographical concepts

• Geography of armed conflict from an anthropological framework

Accepted papers: